Rushing water: The 20-meter high Tegenungan waterfall is the pride of the Kemenuh people. BD/Peni Widarti
After a 30-minute drive east along the Denpasar-Gianyar road, visitors arrive in Kemenuh, a small and simple village, which is not unlike any other village along this increasingly forgotten road (people tend to use the much wider Ida Bagus Mantra highway now).
The village, however, has one charming treasure: the Tegenungan waterfall. “It was named after our hamlet,” ticketing official Desak Putri said as she welcomed several domestic and foreign visitors at the entrance to the waterfall.
Going through the entrance does not take visitors directly to the waterfall. He or she has to descend at least 185 steps before being given the opportunity to cross a river dotted with slippery rocks. Only after surviving the ordeal, which would see any human being lose 2 kilograms, would the visitor have a chance to gaze at the 20-meter high waterfall, a dwarf-sized waterfall by global standards, but quite an awesome one for the Balinese.
A small temple lies near the waterfall. Known as Mertha Jiwa temple, it houses a fresh spring that draws an average of 50 devotees per day. In the spring, the devotees carry out melukat ritual cleansing. The spring also provides clean water for 70 households in Tegenungan hamlet.
It is said that even in the worst drought, the water from the spring keeps flowing. Several food stalls are dotted around the waterfall area, providing a good resting place for visitors who are exhausted after frolicking in the pond below the waterfall.
“We found out about this place from the hotel. I think it is a beautiful and romantic place,” an Australian visitor, Angie Becka, said, adding that the waterfall was a good place to escape to for those who are bored by the bustling city.
The entrance fee is Rp 5,000 (53 US cents) for adult visitors, domestic and foreign, and Rp. 3,000 for a child.
- Photos by Peni Widarti
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